Investment fraud promises seemingly lucrative low-risk investment opportunities in shares, bonds, cryptocurrencies or other kind of investments.
Fraudsters often contact their targets by phone, email, text message or social media, or by using fake celebrity campaigns, fake companies, fake websites or other tempting marketing campaigns – all of which appear to be genuine.
See fake emails & text messages and fake phone calls above to learn more about what to look out for when you receive an email, text message or phone call that could be a fraud attempt.
Tips to avoid becoming a victim of investment fraud
- Never respond to unsolicited phone calls about investment opportunities.
- Think critically about offers that promise you a secure investment, guaranteed returns and big profits – if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!
- If you feel that there is a sense of pressure involved with the investment opportunity, the investment is most probably a scam. You should never feel pressured into investing your money.
- If you want to start investing your money, do it safely by contacting your bank or other qualified financial expert to ask for their advice.
- Never hand over control of your computer or mobile device to somebody else or disclose any personal or financial information.
Sophie goes online to look for investment opportunities. Because of her search history, she soon comes across a website advert that offers “guaranteed profits”. Shortly afterwards, Sophie is contacted by a person who introduces herself as an investment counsellor and who politely tells Sophie that she wants to guide her with her investments. Sophie then makes the first of several payments to a foreign account number.
Sophie receives weekly messages that her investment is growing, but the messages also tell her that she should invest more money to further increase her profits. After making a number of further payments, Sophie realises that she cannot retrieve her money. All contact stops, and the phone number for the fake investment counsellor is no longer in service. Sophie has become a victim of investment fraud and has lost all the money she transferred to the fraudster, who she believed was a genuine investment counsellor.